Adding life to years
Text size:

Young and Gold Intergenerational Urban Art Project

Young and Gold Intergenerational Urban Art Project

Status: Completed


Rockingham Australia
Print this page City population: 13900016% over 60Practice started in 2016


Art has a unique way of connecting people across age groups. The Young and Gold Intergenerational Urban Art Project provided young people and seniors the opportunity to participate in an urban art community project at Golden Bay foreshore. The following objectives were achieved:

• The number of seniors who reported feeling comfortable communicating with young people increased

• The number of young people who reported feeling comfortable communicating with seniors increased

• A public art work that represented a sense of community in Golden Bay was created

• Exposure to alternative art classes amongst intergenerational participants in Golden Bay increased.

External partners included an aged care provider and a land developer. Internal partnerships included three Community Development teams (Seniors, Young People, and Arts and Culture) and Asset Services. The facilitating artist and participants were selected through an Expression of Interest process. Participants included six young people (the youngest was 12 years old) and seven seniors (the oldest was 92 years old). The project was conducted over seven working days. Participants learnt about urban art, explored different techniques, and brainstormed ideas for the final mural design. They then worked together to paint a formerly dreary ablution block wall using the techniques they learnt.

It was initially difficult to interest seniors from the immediate local community to participate in the project. However, through established relationships with an aged care provider, seniors who may otherwise not have had the opportunity were able to participate in the project through the involvement of their carers. This small, intimate group fostered deep conversations and connections, which broke down barriers between the generations. The resulting artwork is a bright mural which brightens up a formerly dreary wall.

Connections and rich conversations between the different generations were possible through the use of urban art as a unique tool to create, collaborate and participate.

Click here to view a video of the project


Key facts

Main target group: Both younger and older people (i.e. intergenerational)

Other target group(s): Intergenerational

Sector(s): Other

Desired outcome for older people:
Build and maintain relationships

Other issues the Age-friendly practice aims to address:
  • Ageism
  • Intergenerational activities

Contact details

Name: Jarvis, Rebekka

Email address:

Preferred language(s): English

Age-friendly practice in detail (click to expand):

Engaging the wider community

Project lead: Local authorities

Older people’s involvement: Older people helped to implement the age-friendly practice

Details on older people’s involvement: Older adults participated in the project. They were instrumental in sharing their thoughts on the mural design with the younger people and facilitating artist, which mostly stemmed from their memories from the area where the project took place.

Moving forward

Has the impact of this age-friendly practice been analysed: Yes

Was the impact positive or negative:

Please share with us what you found in detail:
The project had a big impact on the participants, both young and old. For example, one of the older participants and a young person bonded over their love of art. The senior lady brought in a selection of her own art work and books to share with the young person, which stimulated many conversations over the days. Another young person assisted a senior lady with various digital technology questions and showed her how to use different functions on her mobile, including the camera function. She was then able to successfully use her mobile to capture photographs.

Some feedback from participants include:• ‘I enjoyed it because I could talk to people with a longer art experience, and I like their stories.’ • ‘I think more projects should be open to ‘young and gold’.’• [I enjoyed learning] ‘about the history of Golden Bay and meeting locals.’

Expansion plans:
The City would certainly consider repeating this project in a different part of the city. Due to the high costs involved with contracting a professional urban artist to facilitate the project, funding would have to be secured first.

Looking back

Initially seniors and young people from the local community were invited to participate in the project, but it proved difficult to engage seniors to participate in the project. Should the project be repeated in a different part of the city, contact will be established with a local community group / service provider from the onset of the project to ensure buy-in from seniors.

Age-Friendly World